Jun 3, 2024 - News

Atlanta water outage: Taps run dry and patience grows thin

Atlanta watershed crews work to repair a water main break at 11th Street and Peachtree Walk.

City watershed crews repair a water main break on 11th Street at Peachtree Walk in Midtown. Photo: Kristal Dixon/Axios

👋 So. How was your weekend?

Atlanta remains under a 72-hour state of emergency, boil-water advisory and cloud of confusion after a daisy chain of water main breaks disrupted people's businesses, concert plans and lives.

Why it matters: The water outage hammered home the fact that, despite spending billions of dollars over the past 20 years to improve Atlanta's drinking water and sewer systems, the city's infrastructure remains in poor shape.

  • Also: When a pipe bursts and a flood of criticism follows, the city needs to communicate with residents early, clearly and often.

The latest: Crews continue work to repair a water main break that occurred late Friday at 11th and West Peachtree Streets in Midtown.

  • Another at Euclid and North Avenues near Candler Park has been repaired, with water service to 35 impacted homes restored.
  • DWM said Sunday in a press release that crews "have made significant progress in localizing the repairs."
  • Residents reported improving water pressure and service in Summerhill and Grant Park.

What to know: Atlanta residents in need of bottled water can visit fire stations 1, 2, 10, 11, 15 and 16.

  • A detailed map of which areas that are still affected by the boil water advisory can be viewed online.

Catch up quick: The water main break that started it all happened Friday morning on Joseph E. Boone Boulevard and James P. Brawley Drive in Vine City — where three major lines intersect, Watershed commissioner Al Wiggins Jr. previously said.

  • Businesses and neighborhoods in Downtown and to the east and west were left without water, and many residents took to social media to express frustration at the lack of consistent communication from city officials about repairs and who needed to boil their water.

By Sunday, things were back to normal at major venues. State Farm Arena hosted Megan Thee Stallion's Sunday concert, which was rescheduled from Friday's canceled show.

  • Atlanta United also took on Charlotte at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which offered limited food and drink options due to the boil-water advisory.

State of play: Emory University Hospital Midtown on Sunday announced it was returning to normal operations after diverting ambulances and relocating some patients Saturday due to the water main break, the AJC reports.

What's next: Typically after a major news event or calamity, the mayoral administration briefs the Atlanta City Council at their next full meeting. The legislative body meets today at 1pm.


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